UFC 280 Oliveira vs. Makhachev First Look, Picks, Odds and Predictions

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On October 22, the UFC returns to our screens for a highly stacked pay-per-view event from the Etihad Arena in Abu Dhabi, UAE.

UFC lightweight superstars Charles Oliveira and Islam Makhachev will put their impressive undefeated streaks on the line in the center of the octagon for the main event of the evening.

Read on for our complete betting guide with an early preview of the UFC 280 championship headliner between Oliveira and Makhachev, including updated UFC odds and our free expert UFC 280 first look betting picks, predictions, and analysis.

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Charles Oliveira vs. Islam Makhachev

UFC 280 Lightweight Championship Main Event Bout

Saturday, October 22 – 02:00 PM EDT at Etihad Arena

Charles “Do-Bronx” Oliveira

  • Pro MMA Record: 33-8-0 (9 KOs, 21 submissions, 3 decisions)

Despite having the lightweight championship stripped from his waist ahead of UFC 274 clash with Justin Gaethje, Charles Oliveira is the current 155lb champion in the eyes of most, and a 0.5lb weight differential wasn’t going to sway our opinion otherwise, including the UFC President Dana White.

He doesn’t officially hold the title, but a career boasting 33 wins and more submission stoppages than any other fighter in the UFC has already etched the Brazilian into the history books.

Undoubtedly, “Do-Bronx” owns the most incredible rags-to-riches story in MMA. Should Oliveira claim his eleventh straight victory over Islam Makhachev at UFC 280, he’ll enter into the greatest of all-time debate.

Aged 32, Oliveira is slowly surpassing the epic legacies of those who came before him. A nation rich in mixed martial arts has provided us with the likes of Jose Aldo and Anderson Silva, and now, “Do-Bronx” is filtered into the same conversations.

“Do-Bronx”, a Brazilian Hero

Born and raised in poverty in the Sao Paulo favelas of Brazil, Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu became a love for Oliveira at a young age.

Bullying assisted him further in the gym until he reached a black belt level under renowned BJJ champions Ericson Cardoso and Jorge Patino.

Oliveira is often underrated and overlooked during a time in UFC history when the lightweight division has a reputation as the most demanding weight class on the planet.

Aside from his aristocratic jiu-jitsu offense, Oliveira has gained a vicious striking output during his UFC tenure, which in turn, is another asset of “Do Bronx” that is often disrespected.

Charles Oliveira Combat Sports Accomplishments

  • UFC Lightweight Championship (One time, one defense)
  • UFC Fight of the Night (Three times)
  • UFC Performance of the Night (Twelve times)
  • UFC Submission of the Night (Three times)
  • Most finishes in UFC history (19)
  • Most submission wins in UFC history (16)
  • Most Post Fight Bonuses in UFC history (18)

Charles Oliveira Best Available Odds: (+160) at BetOnline


Islam Makhachev

  • Pro MMA Record: 22-1-0 (4 KOs, 10 submissions, 8 decisions)

With little introduction needed, Islam Makhachev has earnt the respect and owns the attributes of a competitor who’s already held the championship. However, some would say he’s only just getting started.

Since 2015, Makhachev has garnered an 11-1 UFC record while looking unstoppable in each and every bout.

His journey towards title contention has reached its pinnacle, but the wrestling standout has never faced an opponent with the Jiu-Jitsu skillset of Charles Oliveira.

The Spirit of Khabib

A significant percentage of MMA fans will position Khabib Nurmagomedov in their top-3 greatest fighters of all time list, and as a lifelong friend and training partner of “The Eagle”, watching Makhachev inside the cage is like the second coming of Khabib.

Owning the title as an International Master of Sport in Combat Sambo has gifted Makhachev with a wrestling offense that most fighters cannot handle.

As a valued team member at the American Kickboxing Academy, coach Javier Mendez has assisted the Russian in fine-tuning his striking skills to a new level.

Islam Makhachev Combat Sports Accomplishments

  • UFC Fight of the Night (One time)
  • Least significant strikes absorbed in UFC history (0.74)
  • 2016 FIAS World Combat Sambo Championship Gold Medalist
  • Combat Sambo World Champion
  • Four-time Combat Sambo Russian National Champion

Islam Makhachev Best Available Odds: (-185) at BetOnline

Oliveira vs. Makhachev: Breakdown and Analysis

Oliveira Fight Style and How Can Oliveira Defeat Makhachev?

20 of his 31 professional MMA successes have been achieved through submission stoppages, and he owns more finishes (19) than any other fighter in UFC history.

To say Oliveira is a finisher would be an understatement. The only problem is, Makhachev hasn’t been stopped via submission in 23 professional fights.

It’s difficult to gauge a viable gameplan for “Do-Bronx”; he’s talented everywhere, but to attempt a grappling war with the Russian sambo expert could deliver a strenuous 25-minute battle.

This leaves Oliveira in a position to utilize his long frame and strike with Makhachev, an area of the fight he regularly finds success.

Makhachev Fight Style and How Can Makhachev Defeat Oliveira?

It doesn’t take an expert to predict how Makhachev will want to gameplan for Oliveira.

He will hunt for takedowns and likely find a single or double-leg, body lock, trip, or some form of takedown early in the fight and look to maintain top control until an opening for ground or pound or a submission becomes available.

The question lingers, can Oliveira defend off his back and throw up submission attempts of his own? Most likely, but will the Russian, AKA prodigy, surrender to them? I’m skeptical.

Oliveira vs. Makhachev: Prediction and Odds

The available UFC odds at top-rated sportsbooks support Makhachev’s first championship bout appearance. When you witness the dominance, he’s delivered in the UFC thus far, arguing the odds is almost impossible.

I have no doubt the support for Oliveira will outweigh that of Makhachev, and I’d love to see Do-Bronx shock the world, but we must face the facts.

Oliveira has allowed most of his opponents to hurt him severely, to the point where these fights were close to being stopped.

Makhachev won’t welcome the chaos that helped the Brazilian return from the dead in past fights, and I expect a new reign of Russian dominance will begin at UFC 280.

UFC Pick: Makhachev to Win (-185) at BetOnline (visit our BetOnline Review)

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Makhachev to Win (-185)
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UFC 280 Main Card and Odds

UFC 280 Preliminary Card and Odds

*The line and/or odds on picks in this article might have moved since the content was commissioned. For updated line movements, visit BMR’s free betting odds product.